readySC

    readySC

    readySC™ is one of the nation’s premier economic development training programs.

    Since 1961, we’ve helped thousands of companies across the state start-up or expand quickly and efficiently by providing comprehensive, custom-designed workforce recruiting and training solutions. 

    Working in tandem with sixteen local technical colleges, our Apprenticeship Carolina program and our e-Zone job retraining program, we strive to take our client organizations’ workforce from initial start-up or early production to 100% proficiency.

    readySC will work with the organization through our proven 3D process, which includes:

     

    Discovery.

    readySC works with the company to determine the knowledge, skills and abilities needed…and to define the culture and working environment the organization wants to create at the new facility.

     

    Design.

    We then design training to meet those specific needs. readySC doesn’t just deliver training; we integrate the organization’s principles into every facet of the project so that the resulting recruiting and training plan is specifically customized.

    Our goal is to help companies start production with employees who are already immersed in the culture and processes. 

     

    Delivery.

    readySC is completely flexible in our delivery options…Hands-on simulations of the working environment; computer-based training; workstation training; virtual recreations of the work processes; hand-held video delivery options or classroom training.

    We work with organizations to determine the right solution.

     

    SCTECHJOBS.COM

    sctechjobs.com is a recruitment service provided by readySC for our client organizations.

    This online application system provides information about all current training opportunities. 

    On average, over 40,000 online applications are taken each year through the site.

     

    readySC by the Numbers:

     

    Over 5,300 trained last fiscal year

    115 companies served last fiscal year

    Over 310,000 trained since 1961

    49% African American; 38% Caucasian; 13% Other

    37% Female; 63% Male

    36 Average Age

    12.7 Average Education

    Charles Lea Center’s Technology Approach Helping Others

    Charles Lea Center’s Technology Approach Helping Others

     By Lois R. Durrah, M.A., LPC, NCC Senior Vice President Community Supports Services 

    Since 1971, the Charles Lea Center has played a crucial role by helping thousands of Spartanburg County residents with intellectual disabilities or chronic medical conditions succeed in life.

    What started as a mission to help children with disabilities has blossomed into an organization committed to helping people of all ages.

    When working with individuals and their families, we heard a consistent theme of feedback – just like everyone else, they wanted a sense of independence. 

     

     Leveraging Technology 

    Never content with doing things as they’ve always been done, the Charles Lea Center works to find creative solutions to providing services.

    Staff quickly realized they could leverage the growing technology offerings and implement them into the daily lives of individuals to give that freedom and independence.

    Technology, like an Amazon Echo device that we take for granted, can serve a vital role in providing the freedom to let those with disabilities lead normal lives.

    The Center has made incredible progress over the years putting the technology to work that has allowed many individuals to live on their own without 24/7 assistance. 

     

    Work Options 

    The Charles Lea Center also provides job training to the individuals we serve.

    The Center has also worked to create jobs within our organization that offer services to local businesses and industries.

    This allows those we serve to earn a paycheck and feel a level of confidence they didn’t have prior.

    Through our innovative Career Start and Charles Lea Industries, we are helping grow our job market. 

     

     Getting Noticed 

    Over the last decade, the Charles Lea Center has grown into a national leader in providing the supports to help those being served.

    Five years ago, the state of North Carolina reached out to Charles Lea Center leaders to inquire about how it implemented these unique elements into the system.

    That discussion led to a pilot program to provide supports in the Tarheel State.

    The Charles Lea Center began to methodically roll out services in Greenville and Wilmington, North Carolina and is now serving a growing number of people in eastern North Carolina.

    Other states have also taken notice and are now using the Charles Lea Center’s expertise to expand their services. 

     

     The Work Isn’t Done 

     While being considered a national leader, the Charles Lea Center isn’t sitting idly by and offering the services and supports already in place.

    The organization continues to grow and look for creative ways to give individuals the tools they need to feel like they are a part of the community.

    The Charles Lea Center is committed to supporting individuals with disabilities where they live, work, and play. 

     

    Upcoming Events 

    The Charles Lea Center Foundation will host Road Rally 36 “Homegrown & Locally Owned”, on Sunday, October 2, 2022.

    This annual event is the longest running fundraiser in Spartanburg.

    Proceeds go to benefit initiatives for persons with disabilities. 

    Career Start Employment Training Center will host its Open House.

    Representatives from the seven school districts and McCarthy-Teszler School will participate in a tour and informational showcasing the use of technology for employment skills development. 

    Cyber Security for the Small to Medium Business (SMB) Segment

    Cyber Security for the Small to Medium Business (SMB) Segment

    It should be no surprise that large companies spend enormous amounts to protect themselves from cyber-attacks.
    The main reasons are to protect their IP (Intellectual Property), to keep their company and networks from becoming compromised, and to protect the interest of their employees, customers, and shareholders. 

    Too often, folks in the SMB segment are most fearful of the cost to recover their data should systems be compromised, like a ransomware attack, for example.
    In many cases, however, it’s not the goal of a hacker to just encrypt systems hoping for a reward.
    Most times the critical data is backed up and can be recovered.
    But, if the IP of a company is lost, then there is long-term risk to survival.  In many cases, foreign countries sponsor cyber terrorism to gain the intellectual property of a company.  

    Likewise, stealing personal information opens the door to credit and identity theft.
    This type of cyber-attack could be in the form of hijacking critical personal data like Social Security Info and other data to be used against individuals.  

    Smaller businesses are not able to afford the same type of security measures that large companies employ, so in many cases, getting information from SMB companies may be substantially easier – even if the payoff is not as much.
    Keep in mind that the nation-states and foreign actors have a lot of time, and a lot of patience.
    Infiltrating several small businesses could easily be more profitable than hacking one larger company.
    So, it’s not a good idea for a smaller company to just “hope for the best”.

       
    Trust me.
    Your Antivirus Product is not sufficient to stop a cyber-attack.
    The “Bad Guys” are not really interested in simply encrypting your computer.
    That’s usually a way to extort extra money from you after they have harvested your company’s (and personal) data – which is the real goal.
    If I can collect enough information about you, and your company’s IP, then they can certainly use that information in future efforts to harm you.
    There are many ways for a hacker to get your information.  


    Here are some questions to ask yourself:

    • Do you use your work email account to access personal information like banking or credit card websites?  What about Social media sites?
    • Does your mobile phone have a pass code or facial recognition and is it enabled?
    • Do you have multi-factor authentication on email, credit card, bank, and social media accounts?
    • Does your mobile phone account (Verizon, AT&T, etc) have a PIN Number so that no one have your phone number transferred?
    • Is your email filtered, and is your email account backed up?
    • Are links in your email filtered through a system that checks for malicious content?
    • Is your email monitored so that someone is notified if a forwarding rule is created?
    • What if someone from a foreign country log onto your email?
    • Do you store sensitive information in your email?

    You see, all of these are what we call “threat vectors” and your antivirus program simply has no way to protect you from any event resulting from threats that simply don’t run on your computer!
    In fact, access to your computer may not even be necessary.

    So, what is a small company to do?
    There are several prudent steps that even a small company can take to strengthen their security posture.
    Many business insurance companies are including cyber insurance in their policies, but to qualify for this insurance, they are requiring certain protocols be in place.

    1. Enable Multi-Factor Authentication on your Microsoft (or Google) accounts so logging into your account becomes much more difficult for an intruder.
    2. Monitor the network traffic in your company by a Security Operations Center (SOC).  Data like this is usually sent in “log files” to a system called a “SEIM” (Security Information and Event Management) which is a system used by security analysts so that unusual behavior is detected, and someone is alerted if action is needed.   Analysts match “normal” versus “unusual” behavior and can flag unusual behavior.
    3. Have the logs from your company’s firewall monitored by a SIEM / SOC so that if security events occur then action is taken.  Potentially lock your firewall down so that no traffic from foreign countries can even get through.  (This is not foolproof, but it is a great deterrent)
    4. Make your Office 365 tenant monitored to make sure your account is not being accessed from offshore, and that email forwarding rules are not created.  (This is a typical attack – to set up forwarding rules in your email so that sensitive email is sent to a hacker, rather than going to your “inbox”)
    5. Your Antivirus program should likewise be monitored by a SIEM / SOC.  

    The reality is that most of the activity that we want to stop happens when we are not at work.  That’s why having your systems monitored 24×7 is critical.  If a cyber-attack occurs on a weekend, they bad guys would have many uninterrupted hours to do damage.

    If you’re concerned about cyber security, want a cyber-security audit, or if your business insurance carrier is requiring these protections to write your policy – please feel free to contact us. 

    We would be happy to help!

     

    Soteria Community Development Corporation Works for Their Community

    Soteria Community Development Corporation Works for Their Community

    Soteria Community Development Corporation opened its doors over 20 years ago to create opportunities for previously incarcerated individuals to thrive.
    Our founder, Jerry Blassingame, wrote the business plan from his prison cell as he watched men get out of prison only to return within a few months.
    The mission and vision that Jerry created all those years ago has consistently guided this organization to help thousands of people impacted by our criminal justice system.

    Soteria

    Our Reentry Program provides housing, education, employment, affirmation, and advocacy services to men and women for 6-12 months where individuals receive:

    • Transitional Housing
    • Transportation
    • Clothing & Food
    • Full Time Employment
    • Alcohol & Drug Abuse Counseling
    • Education & Technical Training
    • Mentoring
    • Devotion & Bible Study
    • Financial Literacy Classes

     

    Soteria

    Soteria

    Transitional Housing:  SOTERIA HOUSE

    Soteria House for Men is a 16-bed transitional home in Travelers Rest and Soteria House for Women is a 16-bed transitional home in Greenville where our interns live while enrolled in our 6–12-month program.
    Interns at Soteria House follow a daily schedule that begins with journaling and ends with a family-style meal in the evenings.
    Our participants are assigned responsibilities such as driver, cook, and house manager to support one another as they come and go from their job placements within the community.
    We have curfews and community service requirements to help men and women establish the structures that support healthy, successful lifestyles as they transition back into society.

    Soteria

    Soteria

    Social Enterprise:  SOTERIA AT WORK

    A social enterprise exists to address social issues rather than focusing primarily on profit.
    Soteria At Work is our woodworking shop that uses carpentry to teach job skills to men enrolled in our program – both enhancing the workforce and creating new jobs.
    We deconstruct old buildings, reclaim the wood, and create beautiful pieces of furniture – like sliding barn doors and farm tables.  As men reclaim the wood – sanding, building, finishing – they see the same process at work in their own lives as they work through our reentry program.
    Things that were discarded become beautiful and full of value.

    Unfortunately, our workshop was burned in July when a dumpster outside of our building caught fire, and we lost everything.
    We are working diligently to build both a temporary and a permanent workspace so that we can continue to “Reclaim Wood, Reclaim Lives”.

    Learn more about our work at SOTERIAATWORK.COM

    Affordable Housing:

    To further our commitment to community development, Soteria provides affordable housing units for low-moderate income families.
    Our (6) 2-Bedroom and (7) 3-Bedroom rentals often become the next step for our program participants once they graduate.

     

    Support Soteria // JOIN US OCT 27!

    Soteria has an annual Fundraiser every Fall where we host a community conversation that educates and inspires people both about the realities of reentry and about the power of community.
    We also auction art and furniture created by local artisans and men in our Soteria at Work job training program.

    This year, our fundraiser will be Oct 27 from 7-9pm at Fluor Field. 

    For tickets and details, visit event.gives/Soteria

    If you would like to donate, visit our website at SoteriaCDC.org, and select the Donate button.

    Soteria

    Soteria

    Quick Facts:

    In FY 2021, Greenville County was the highest committing county in SC, accounting for 10.1% of the State’s incarcerated population.

    Over 700,000 People Are Released from State & Federal Prisons Annually.

    • Nearly 60% are unemployed after 1 year.
    • 50% are rearrested within 12 months of release.
    • 67% are rearrested within 36 months of release.
      Source: National Institute of Justice, US Bureau of Justice Statistics

    10 Million Children In The Us Have Had A Parent Incarcerated.

    • 70% of them will serve time in prison as well. Source: Pew Charitable Trusts
    • Currently 122 legal statutes that directly prevent individuals from obtaining employment.
    • Nationwide, 15-17% of post-incarcerated individuals expect to be homeless upon their release, which can lead to other challenges including poor mental and physical health, lack of education and employment opportunities, and strains on family relationships
    • Post-incarcerated individuals entering Greenville County, with a lack of education, employment, and housing, contribute and will continue to contribute to Greenville County’s current poverty rate of 12.1%.

    2021 TATT Meeting Recaps

    December 2, 2021: Upstate Economic Development Update with John Lummus, CEO of Upstate Alliance
    November 4, 2021: Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport Update with Scott Carr
    October 21, 2021: Congressional Update; Guest Speaker – U.S. Congressman Jeff Duncan.

    October 7, 2021: DHEC Upstate Health Update; Guest Speaker: Dr. Kandi Fredere, Upstate Public Health Director, SC DHEC, and Dr. Lisa Carlson, Upstate Medical Director, SC DHEC

    September 9, 2021: Impacts of COVID-19 on Employee Benefits and Office Protocols – Guest Speakers: George Shira, VP for Human Resources – Chemical Division, Milliken & Company and Jim Shew, Vice President – Employee Health & Benefits, Marsh & McLennan Agency
    August 26, 2021: Resource Updates, Guest Speakers: Matt Bell, SCRA/SC Launch, Frannie Stockwell, Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce, and Larry Bounds, Chautauqua Festival.
    August 12, 2021: Beware of the Latest Scams Update, Guest Speakers: Vee Daniel, Executive Director, Better Business Bureau of the Upstate
    July 29, 2021: Update on Creating a Safer Upstate Initiative, Guest Speakers: Members of the Creating a Safer Upstate Committee
    July 15, 2021: Guest Speaker: Emily Felt, Director of State Energy Policy, Duke Energy
    June 24, 2021: Guest Speaker: Beth Paul, GM of Bon Secours Wellness Arena
    June 10, 2021: Guest Speaker: Congressman William Timmons
    May 27, 2021: Guest Speaker: Robyn Grable, Founder & CEO of Veterans ASCEND/Ability ASCEND.
    May 13, 2021: BMW Pro-Am: Guest Speakers: Judson Conwell, Business Development Manager, BMW Pro-Am and Kari Snyder, Charity and Volunteer Coordinator, BMW Pro-Am.
    April 30, 2021: Baseball is Back! Guest Speaker, Jeff Brown, Greenville Drive.
    April 15, 2021: Latest news from Greenville-Spartanburg Airport:  Guest Speaker, Scott Carr, GSP Airport.
    April 1, 2021: Health Care Update: Guest Speaker, Dr. Sara Saccocio, Ambulatory Chief Medical Officer, Prisma Health.
    March 18, 2021: Maintaining Mental Health: Guest Speaker, Dr. Michael Hedgecock, AnMed Health
    March 4, 2021: Broadband in the Upstate: Guest Speakers, Tom Allen, Director of Safety, Transportation and Emergency Response, South Carolina Office of Regulatory Staff; Jim Stritzinger, Founder, President & CEO, Revolution D, Inc.; Shannon Sears, Director of Commercial Operations, West Carolina Tel.
    February 18, 2021: Guest Speakers, Tiffany Tate and Aimee Redick, Upstate Alliance “Skill Up” Initiative.
    February 4, 2021: Guest Speaker, Elizabeth Davis, President, Furman University.
    January 21, 2021: Guest Speaker, Dr. Jonathan Knoche, Medical Consultant, Divisions of Immunization and Acute Disease Epidemiology, S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control.
    January 7, 2021: Scott Baier, Ph.D., Professor and Chair, John E. Walker Department of Economics, Clemson University